Thursday, September 17, 2009

"And you want me to do what, exactly?" say the legs.

To the left is the raccoon repellent. Jalapeno peppers, along with Cayenne pepper was mentioned most in homemade raccoon repellents.

I was to take raw peppers, slice them in half and let them steep in a quart of water overnight. Then take this mixture, puree the peppers in the water and add it to a gallon of water mixed with a teaspoon of dish detergent, which is a wetting agent. Then pour this mixture into a squirt bottle.

I don't mind spicy but I don't like hot. The chances of me accidentally rubbing my eye after slicing raw Jalapeno peppers is probably akin to the chances of the sun coming up in the east in the morning. That wasn't going to happen.

So the next option was to mix a container of Cayenne pepper with the dish detergent in a gallon of water. But lugging a gallon of water to the roof and then to the vent was not a grandly safe idea.

When I got to the store and saw that I could get Jalapeno hot sauce, I decided the thing to do was to take one bottle up on the roof and spread it around the shingles surrounding the vent. I would then sprinkle the Cayenne pepper on top of the hot sauce. If that wasn't a deterrent, I don't know what was.

So I got the ladder and leaned it against the house and started to climb. Now there is a deck and last night, I stood on the deck railing, which would be at the bottom right off the photo, and, at 1:30 in the morning, slung a 25 foot electrical extension cord toward a raccoon near the chimney. But the problem is, that in order to get onto the roof, I have to climb all the way to the top of the ladder, swing my leg or body onto the roof and slide up. I got to rung number 4 from the top and realized, I couldn't do it.

Yes, part of that is my fear of heights although I have been on my roof on at least 3 occasions. But, at those times, there was someone to hold the ladder and hand up the things I needed, like the trowel to clean the gutters or the basketball to knock down that huge wasp nest or the hose to wash off the roof after cleaning the gutters. It's just me.

Therefore, although I could put the pepper and hot sauce in the gutter, I could not make myself climb the extra two rungs to maybe get clear of the gutters to get onto the roof. Yes, I feel like an idiot, but I just cannot do it. It scares me. If there was someone to hold the ladder, perhaps, no probably. Me myself and I? No.

See, I have to get to that vent to the right of the chimney. That's where he hung out and we played a cat and mouse game of me pummeling him with the extension cord as he wandered about each side of the chimney.

What do I do? Well, Plan B is to have the hot sauce and the extension cord at the ready. If he comes back and starts again, I will dump the hot sauce into a bowl and then dunk the business end into the hot sauce and fling it at him. My hope is that even if I don't hit him square in the head as I did last night, enough hot sauce will get flung in his general direction that some is bound to splash onto him. That alone should get his attention and make him run.

Then tomorrow, I can ask Rodney if he would mind coming to the house and holding the ladder. It's supposed to rain on Sunday and Monday so this will be gone then anyway.

I need to see, up close, if he pulled anything up. From the top of the ladder, or as far up as I got, it didn't look like he did. I am pretty sure I don't have roofing nails in the basement, but I need to go to the hardware store anyway on Saturday.

My real hope is that, because I put up a fight, he will go somewhere else where there isn't someone who fights back. Oh the joys of home ownership.

Beverage: Dr. Pepper


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